|UCAOA Offers Comments on Sleep Apnea Screening|
In response to a request for public comment, on July 7, UCAOA offered its recommendations to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) on screening of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) for transportation workers.
Throughout its comments, UCAOA offered its support of recommendations from the Motor Carrier Safety Advisory Committee (MCSAC) and the Medical Review Board (MRB), including the recommendation that a driver with an OSA diagnosis should be required to be recertified annually, regardless of whether the driver is undergoing medical treatment or management for OSA. In cases where the driver is undergoing treatment, the driver must be able to demonstrate to the medical examiner compliance with that treatment.
UCAOA also agreed with the MCSAC and MRB that in cases where the driver exhibits risk factors for OSA, a 60-day certification should be granted at the discretion of the medical examiner. UCAOA suggested, however, that a driver should be given the option to be re-examined and demonstrate one week minimum treatment compliance at 30 days, rather than 60 days.
UCAOA stressed the importance of medical examiner education and effective screening tools to reduce unnecessary further testing and cost to the transportation worker. UCAOA also suggested that the FMCSA create a driver’s “Bill of Rights” that could include, among other things, inform the driver knows he/she has the right to choose where to receive OSA testing and evaluation.
FMCSA will review comments received before proposing new regulations for OSA screening, testing and treatment.